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Car Makers Drove 14.4 Million Clicks From Google Ads In 2 Months (And That Doesn’t Include Mobile)

A whopping 177 automotive manufacture sites drove 14.4 million paid search clicks from Google ads on desktops and tablets this January and February. Of those 177 advertisers, the top 20 advertisers (roughly 11 percent) accounted for 81 percent of the paid search clicks in the two month period,…

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How To Prevent People From Tagging You In Twitter Photos

You can now tag people in photos on Twitter and add up to four photos in one tweet. But thankfully for the privacy-conscious, you can determine who, if anyone, can tag you.

The new feature lets anyone tag you by default, but Twitter provides three photo-tagging privacy options: Anyone; Only people you follow; or No one.

To change your settings:

  1. Click on the gear icon on the top right of
  2. Select “Settings”
  3. Select “Privacy and Security”
  4. Under “Privacy” you can choose to restrict your photo tagging settings

Twitter’s new photo-tagging feature is an interesting move for the social network that has made a hobby of copying features from Facebook, especially now that it’s a publicly-traded company subject to scrutiny from investors on a regular basis.

On Facebook, tagging photos usually only happens among connected friends, and tags can be approved or denied by the person who’s been tagged. On Twitter, tagging photos is bound to cause more interaction between followers that aren’t naturally friends in real life, but solely know each other from 140-character outbursts.

We expect Twitter will monitor the rollout of this photo-tagging feature to ensure it’s not being abused by trolls. Still, Twitter provides plenty of ways to deal with unwanted communications on the network; not-so-coincidentally, so does Facebook.

Image via Twitter

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3 Ways The Facebook-Oculus Deal Could Work Out, From Awesome To Terrifying

Facebook just placed a $2 billion bet on the Next Big Thing by snapping up startup Oculus VR and its unreleased but much-gushed-over virtual-reality headset, the Oculus Rift. And not in the next-hit-app sense or the everyday-bullshit-press-release sense—like most actual Big Things, Oculus isn’t a one-trick-app or a gimmick.

In reality, it’s a platform so vast we literally cannot see its edges. The Oculus Rift lays the foundation for a future that we can hardly even imagine until we try it on. Mark Zuckerberg tried it on. Then he bought it.

So now what happens?

Scenario #1: With More Resources, Oculus Thrives 

Facebook is no hardware company—we’ve known that for years. But as Zuck and co. have reminded us endlessly, Facebookis a mobile company. On a conference call Tuesday to discuss the Oculus acquisition, Zuckerberg asserted his belief in virtual reality as the next major platform with fanboyish conviction. And that’s a good sign.

“Now we have this strong position on mobile and we’re feeling increasingly good about that … we think vision is going to be the next really big platform,” Zuckerberg said. “There are not that many things that are candidates to be the next computing platform.”

Unlike WhatsApp, Instagram and a string of small earlier Facebook acquisitions, Oculus isn’t a defensive play—it’s an offensive leap toward the next generation of computing. And like Instagram, Oculus has a vocal body of fierce loyalists who’ve loved the company from day one. Those true believers didn’t keep ads off of Instagram, but they kept Facebook—which still lets Instagram operate pretty much independently—in check.

To imagine the best case scenario for Oculus, let’s suspend our skepticism for a moment and listen to Palmer Luckey, the visionary founder of Oculus, who appears to have stayed up all night making that case on Reddit:

  • We now have the freedom to make the right decisions without worrying about short financial profit or investor returns.
  • We are going to have a lot of people working on other things as well (film, education, communication, etc), but we are gamers at heart. None of our gaming resources will be diverted.
  • This deal specifically lets us greatly lower the price of the Rift.
  • Oculus continues to operate independently! We are going to remain as indie/developer/enthusiast friendly as we have always been, if not more so.
  • I guarantee that you won’t need to log into your Facebook account every time you wanna use the Oculus Rift.
  • We can make custom hardware, not rely on the scraps of the mobile phone industry. That is insanely expensive, think hundreds of millions of dollars. 
  • If anything, our hardware and software will get even more open, and Facebook is onboard with that.

Key takeaways? The Rift will get cheaper. Oculus was feeling the heat from its investors and wants to be left alone for a while. You won’t need to log into a Facebook account “every time” you fire up the Rift (every time? Maybe just the first time? Whew). Facebook will let Oculus continue to serve its core indie developer community, assuming that community sticks around.

Essentially, the Oculus team remains independent, gets an infusion of talent and resources and keeps its head down working on the best virtual reality experience it can make. (Caveat: Now it’s making it for Facebook.)

The bit about the Oculus hardware and software staying open feels a little hard to believe, but then again Facebook created the Open Compute Project, an initiative to pry the lid off of proprietary server hardware in the style of open source software projects.

Scenario #2: Oculus Loses Its Innovators—Welcome To RiftVille

For anyone who’s followed the short evolution of the Oculus Rift, pairing with Facebook feels like a nightmare scenario. Oculus, with its early model held together by what looked like duct tape, was a rare scrappy upstart that punched way above its weight.

Facebook, once scrappy in its own right (if one can be scrappy at Harvard), is now a global social media force the likes of which the world has never seen. And in spite of its supposed enduring hacker ethos, it’s difficult to trust a company that snaked into our lives ten years ago and has somehow held us, often unhappily, in its thrall ever since. This fundamental distrust is keeping Oculus believers awake at night. (OK, last night, at least.)

So Oculus, which was an open platform for virtual imagination, now answers to a corporate overlord—one that makes billions from hacking our brains and serving us ads for things we never even intended for it to know we cared about. There is no precedent for how Facebook will handle Oculus. Instagram, WhatsApp, Parse—all useful tools in their own rights—don’t come close to the disruptive potential many see in the Oculus Rift.

Facebook may leave its new toy alone for a while, but former Oculus enthusiasts with big ideas are wary of the long game—the one that Facebook admits it’s playing. In this scenario, indie game developers band together and jump ship. (Notch, the legendary creator of Minecraft, is already leading the charge on this bit.)

In this scenario, the notion of a collaborative, open virtual reality platform dies on the vine. And it’s not just about game makers. Science labs around the country, even NASA, turn away from Oculus, fearing its ties to a company that thrives on owning and selling data about its users. Potential education and medical applications are rendered null by privacy concerns.

We languish in a dumb virtual purgatory of Candy Crush and FarmVille forever, wandering around listlessly issuing Likes in three dimensions instead of two.

Scenario #3: Oculus Thrives … Until Facebook Turns The Ads Spigot

In 2012, Facebook struggled to conquer mobile. Already extremely slow to bring an iPad app to market, Zuckerberg eventually admitted that investing heavily in clunky HTML5 apps rather than building native was his “biggest mistake.” Then Zuck turned the ship around, and now 53% of Facebook’s ad revenue comes from mobile. Two years ago that number was 0%. Facebook is an advertising company, and while Oculus may no longer have investors to answer to, Facebook does.

Again, a reminder: Facebook is an advertising company. In its last reported quarter, $2.34 billion of its $2.59 billion total revenue came from advertising. Facebook hit its mark, serving targeted ads over smartphones and tablets, platforms on which the company commands unprecedented levels of engagement.

You know what else is engaging? The 360-degree immersive virtual environment that the Oculus Rift brings to the table.

Facebook doesn’t want or need to make money off of the hardware (again, it’s an ad company, not a hardware company). It will subsidize the hardware to get the platform into as many hands as possible. Zuckerberg stated outright that the acquisition is a “software and services thing,” going on to mutter something vague about people buying virtual goods … and well, yes, there will be ads—but don’t worry about them yet.

Sure, as Zuckerberg said, the real strategy might be five years out—Oculus will likely be left to its own devices in the meantime—but once the most engaging platform ever created reaches perfection, Facebook’s green-eyeshade types will come calling. And they won’t need to go far.

Oculus Rift images by Sergey Galyonkin via Flickr, Facebook image by Taylor Hatmaker

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Google Misattributing Content From Major News Publishers

A reader has sent us examples of Google misattributing content from dozens of large online news publications, with hundreds thousands of examples of Google indexing URLs and pages, but that content being pulled from a different source. For example, if you search for [hometownlocator…

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Unicorn Accounts Don’t Use DKI & 9 Other PPC Lessons From SMX West

Freshly back from the excitement of SMX West in beautiful San Jose and full to the brim with insightful PPC notes (if Evernote can technically get full to the brim), I’ve set about compiling a list of my top PPC-related takeaways from the event. The following are the ten that most caught my…

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BrandVerity Offers Feedback From Google, Bing On Paid Search Trademark Complaints

Brands aiming to protect themselves from trademark infringement in paid search are often met with white noise after they submit complaints to the search engines. They typically aren’t told if any action was taken — and even more frustrating, if no action was taken, why. To help solve…

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The Next Disney Star Won’t Come From “The Mickey Mouse Club”

There is a fundamental shift in the star-making machinery in Hollywood that pumps out teen celebrities. They are no longer coming from studio creations like “The Mickey Mouse Club“ that launched the careers of Justin Timberlake and Britney Spears. Instead, they’re on YouTube.

No one can attest to that quite like Disney, which is betting big on viral stars not just to draw view but to build its next-generation franchises that it can promote on cable channels, theme parks, and more. The Walt Disney Co. is acquiring Maker Studios, one of YouTube’s largest video production networks for $500 million, Reuters reported on Monday. (That number could increase to as much as $950 million if Maker hits designated performance milestones.)

Its sale to Disney will likely hearten YouTube creators who, in recent years, have grown unsure of the economy the Google-owned video site has built around them.

Maker Studios produces and distributes videos for a viewership of millennials—those who came of age around the year 2000, four years after “The Mickey Mouse Club” went off the air. Its channels attract more than 4.5 billion monthly views and collectively have more than 340 million monthly subscribers. 

Those are numbers that put most broadcast and cable operations to shame—yet Maker and other YouTube operators have struggled to make their stars household names. That’s where Hollywood’s hitmakers can help.

From “YouTube Famous” To Just Plain Famous

Gone are the days when stars like Christina Aguilera had to make it through grueling auditions. Now people can become viral celebrities virtually overnight, and thanks to YouTube’s system of channels, subscriptions, and revenue-sharing, turn those millions of fans into a lasting following that makes some of them millions.

Now that new star system is tying up with a traditional media company. And the Disney-Maker Studios deal won’t likely be the last of its kind.

So who are these celebrities of the future? Take a look at some of the people whose careers have launched on YouTube. 


Felix Kjellberg, a 24-year-old Swedish videogame commentator, is YouTube’s biggest star, with 25 million subscribers. Maker Studios represents PewDiePie, as Kjellberg’s known on YouTube. While he’s not an old-media celebrity, his recommendations can instantly boost a game’s sales.

Justin Bieber

It’s easy to forget that the crooning Canadian has his roots on YouTube. At 12, he began posting videos of himself singing. Record labels soon discovered him and launched him into stardom. He’s since made history by passing 3 billion views on his YouTube channel. Bieber‘s the kind of futurecelebrity Disney hopes to own. 

Michelle Phan

In 2007, Michelle Phan posted a video tutorial on makeup, and since then has become not only a YouTube phenomenon, but a much-cited cosmetics expert. By using YouTube to become one of the Internet’s most popular beauty insiders, she eventually created her own online-video network called FAWN (For All Women Network) and a beauty social networking site. She also teamed up with L’Oreal to launch her own makeup line. 

She has more than 6 million subscribers and is one of the most popular female YouTubers. 

Fred Figglehorn

Actor Lucas Cruikshank created the Fred video series as a teenager that centers around an annoying, dysfunctional 6-year-old boy named Fred Figglehorn. Though he describes his videos as “programming for kids by kids,” the storyline highlights serious issues children face growing up.

The video series was so popular that Nickelodeon picked it up for three movies and 24 episodes of “Fred: The Show.” 

Rebecca Black

Friday,” one of the worst songs ever made, immediately became a classic YouTube hit, with more than 66 million views. Since that infamous day, Rebecca Black has taken her YouTube talents to television, with appearances on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno and a cameo in a Katy Perry music video

Her follow-up song, “Saturday,” was dubbed “a totally passable piece of Radio Disney-esque pop” by Billboard magazine

Who’s Next?

What these stars’ crossover appeal tells us is that the YouTube audience can now determine what’s popular not just online, but offline as well. What Disney has bought isn’t just a stable of YouTube channels: It’s a next-generation talent-discovery machine that can fuel all of its entertainment properties.

Images via YouTube

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Beginner SEO Training From Google Webmaster Academy – Business 2 Community

Beginner SEO Training From Google Webmaster Academy
Business 2 Community
While Webmaster Academy itself is no new concept, as it was originally launched in May 2012, this is a much more up-to-date version. The original WA was focused on helping small businesses get a basic website live, with SEO being only one of the

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SEO: Getting More from Google’s Keyword Planner – Practical Ecommerce

SEO: Getting More from Google's Keyword Planner
Practical Ecommerce
There are certainly other keyword research tools: Wordtracker, WordStream, Searchmetrics, and many vendors that provide all-in-one SEO management and reporting solutions. I prefer Keyword Planner because Google drives the most organic search traffic 
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SHOWBIZ: Spirited approach from Seo – New Straits Times

SHOWBIZ: Spirited approach from Seo
New Straits Times
HANDSOME Korean actor and singer Seo In Guk thinks that being able to see ghosts is a unique and incredible power. “It would be great if I have such power and can use it to befriend ghosts, but it probably won't change the fact that I'm scared of them

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